Gary Kurtz

Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).wikipedia
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The Empire Strikes Back

Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes BackStar Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Backcarbonite
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).
It was produced by Gary Kurtz for Lucasfilm and stars Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, David Prowse, Kenny Baker, Peter Mayhew, and Frank Oz.

Slipstream (1989 film)

Slipstream1989Slipstream'' (1989 film)
Kurtz also co-produced the 1989 science fiction adventure film Slipstream, which reunited him with Star Wars star Mark Hamill.
It was produced by Gary Kurtz, best known for his collaboration with George Lucas on the first two Star Wars films and American Graffiti.

The Dark Crystal

Dark CrystalJim Henson's The Dark CrystalJim Henson’s The Dark Crystal: Creation Myths
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).
The Dark Crystal was produced by Gary Kurtz, while the screenplay was written by David Odell, with whom Henson previously worked as a staff writer for The Muppet Show.

Star Wars (film)

Star WarsStar Wars Episode IV: A New HopeA New Hope
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).
After United Artists declined to budget the film, Lucas and producer Gary Kurtz presented the film treatment to Universal Pictures, the studio that financed American Graffiti; however, it rejected its options for the film because the concept was "a little strange", and it said that Lucas should follow American Graffiti with more consequential themes.

American Graffiti

American Zucchini
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).
Lucas and producer Gary Kurtz began pitching the American Graffiti treatment to various Hollywood studios and production companies in an attempt to secure the financing needed to expand it into a screenplay, but they were unsuccessful.

46th Academy Awards

(46th)19731974
Further nominations at the 46th Academy Awards included Best Director (George Lucas), Best Original Screenplay (Lucas, Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz), Best Supporting Actress (Candy Clark) and Best Film Editing (Verna Fields and Marcia Lucas).

Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

Best Motion Picture – Musical or ComedyGolden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture - Musical or ComedyMusical or Comedy
Kurtz and Coppola went on to win the Best Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy) at the 31st Golden Globe Awards, while Paul Le Mat won Most Promising Newcomer.

Academy Award for Best Picture

Best PictureBest Picture OscarOutstanding Production
Kurtz and Coppola were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture but lost to The Sting.

Beach Ball

Kurtz additionally worked as an assistant director and second unit director, as well as a camera operator for the second unit, on the musical comedy Beach Ball for Paramount Pictures.
Gary Kurtz was assistant director.

Tatooine

Mos EspaTosche StationJabba the Hutt’s palace
When principal photography began on Star Wars on March 22, 1976 in the Tunisian desert for the scenes on the planet Tatooine, the project faced several problems.
Lucas, accompanied by producer Gary Kurtz visited the Tunisian island of Djerba with them and were impressed by the desert landscape and the unusual architecture, and selected Tunisia to provide the desert planet setting.

Howard Kazanjian

Howard G. Kazanjian
Kurtz was actively involved from post production through its release in theatres in the US and the UK, but was replaced four weeks before filming wrapped by Howard Kazanjian.
Kazanjian is also recognized as an uncredited producer on The Empire Strikes Back, replacing producer Gary Kurtz midway through the production.

Two-Lane Blacktop

filmTwo Lane BlacktopTwo-Lane Blacktop (1971)
After leaving military service, Kurtz moved up to the world of studio pictures, acting as the associate producer on the neo-noir Warren Oates-starring Chandler for Metro-Goldwyn Mayer; and Two-Lane Blacktop with Monte Hellman for Universal Pictures, both in 1971.
In 1999, Michigan-based Anchor Bay Entertainment licensed the film from Universal and released it on VHS and DVD, with an audio commentary by Hellman and associate producer Gary Kurtz and a documentary on Hellman directed by George Hickenlooper.

Return of the Jedi

Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the JediStar Wars: Episode VI – Return of the JediStar Wars: Return of the Jedi
On Kurtz's parting of ways with Lucasfilm following the movie's release, Kazanjian took over the producer's reins for Return of the Jedi.
Gary Kurtz, who produced Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back but was replaced as producer for Return of the Jedi by Kazanjian, said in 2010 that the ongoing success with Star Wars merchandise and toys led George Lucas to reject the idea of killing off Han Solo in the middle part of the film during a raid on an Imperial base.

Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland

NEMOa filmfeature adaptation
Japanese producer Yutaka Fujioka had approached George Lucas in 1978 to help produce a film of Little Nemo in Slumberland, but Lucas found problems with the storyline, as did American animator Chuck Jones.
Gary Kurtz was appointed producer of the American production side and hired Ray Bradbury and later Edward Summer to write screenplays.

5-25-77

7777'' (film)
5-25-77 is a coming of age film written and directed by Patrick Read Johnson and produced by Fred Roos and Gary Kurtz.

Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation

Best Dramatic PresentationBest Dramatic Presentation, Short FormHugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form

The Spirit (film)

The Spiriteponymous 2008 film adaptationmotion picture adaptation
During the 1980s, Brad Bird, Jerry Rees, and producer Gary Kurtz attempted to get an animated adaptation off the ground, though studio executives praised the screenplay, they thought the film would be unmarketable, and this version was scrapped.

The Thief and the Cobbler

The Princess and the CobblerArabian Knightanimated feature film
Star Wars producer Gary Kurtz even worked with Williams to attempt to get financing in the mid-1980s.

Friends and Heroes

Friends and Heroes. Series 1. Episode 7.Friends and Heroes. Series 3. Episode 1.

Film producer

producerproducedassociate producer
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).

Return to Oz

Disney film of the same nameother associated works
Gary Douglas Kurtz (July 27, 1940 – September 23, 2018) was an American film producer whose list of credits includes American Graffiti (1973), Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Dark Crystal (1982) and Return to Oz (1985).

Mark Hamill

Kurtz also co-produced the 1989 science fiction adventure film Slipstream, which reunited him with Star Wars star Mark Hamill.

Monte Hellman

After leaving military service, Kurtz moved up to the world of studio pictures, acting as the associate producer on the neo-noir Warren Oates-starring Chandler for Metro-Goldwyn Mayer; and Two-Lane Blacktop with Monte Hellman for Universal Pictures, both in 1971. During 1965, Kurtz was an assistant director on a Monte Hellman Western, Ride in the Whirlwind, starring Jack Nicholson for Proteus Films.